Clutch Making a Noise When You Press it Down?

Bhavick

Veteran Member
Joined
Jun 25, 2018
Location
United Kingdom
TDI
1.9TDI
Hi,

I've noticed a slight noise while I press the clutch down to engage it, kind of hard to describe the noise possibly grinding/whirring. It only happens while I am pressing down on the clutch, once the pedal is all the way down the noise completely disappears and there isn't any issues with changing gears or anything. Any ideas what this could be please?

Thanks
 

PakProtector

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Jan 5, 2014
Location
AnnArbor, MI
TDI
Mk.4 and the Cummins-es
Sounds like the throw-out bearing is about to get unhappy. Bearings stay quiet until about the last 2% of their life...once they start making noise, the end is usually near.

And of course, transmission has to come out, and as a preventative, I would not consider keeping the current clutch/DMF it came with if I had to replace a TO bearing. It is too much a PITA to remove the gearbox...LOL

Douglas
 

Zak99b5

Veteran Member
Joined
Apr 30, 2021
Location
Albany NY
TDI
2003 Jetta TDI
Sounds like the throw-out bearing is about to get unhappy. Bearings stay quiet until about the last 2% of their life...once they start making noise, the end is usually near.

And of course, transmission has to come out, and as a preventative, I would not consider keeping the current clutch/DMF it came with if I had to replace a TO bearing. It is too much a PITA to remove the gearbox...LOL

Douglas
Spitting facts.
 

Bhavick

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Location
United Kingdom
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1.9TDI
OK I've tried taking a video to see if i can capture the sound not sure if you can hear it or not in the video below?


The noise definitely happens when you are pressing the clutch down once it's reaches the bottom of it's travel then it disappears. I've been doing a bit of reading and some people say it could be the throw out bearing?

If this is the culprit what causes it to wear out is it just wear and tear? If i can get away with just replacing the throw out bearing then that's not too bad. I normally take the car to a mechanic that works from home so he's not too bad on labour costs but if you guys are definitely recommending that the whole clutch gets replaced then i may have to consider that but i ain't got tons of money either lol.

Thanks
 

PakProtector

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Location
AnnArbor, MI
TDI
Mk.4 and the Cummins-es
Hmmm...having it stop at full pedal travel is interesting. Maybe the spring( the pressure plate spring ) is lower force when at max disengagement?

It is not so much the clutch itself, but the dual-mass flywheel that has caused troubles. It is why I so like the G60 single mass and a VR6 clutch. No dual mass to wear, and the VR6 will hold more torque, and is lighter than the stock clutch in my '04. The Luk 17-050 is a dual mass kit that is pre-assembled and *ABOUT 2/3 the cost of a VR6 set up, and it is lighter still at the pedal. I have put in both, and have had no issue with the 17-050, and my son has had charge of it for some time now... :)

Douglas
 

BobnOH

not-a-mechanic
Joined
May 29, 2004
Location
central Ohio
TDI
New Beetle 2003 manual
I got it, but I'm a teenager 4 times over.
It almost has to be the bearing, possible dm flywheel separating. It could go tomorrow or last 5 years, just how clutches are, lots of moving bits.
 

PakProtector

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Location
AnnArbor, MI
TDI
Mk.4 and the Cummins-es
I got it, but I'm a teenager 4 times over.
It almost has to be the bearing, possible dm flywheel separating. It could go tomorrow or last 5 years, just how clutches are, lots of moving bits.
As I see it, a noise that appears when the clutch pedal is pressed leaves me to seriously suspect the TO bearing. And once I am in there, unless I *KNOW the clutch is young, it comes out as well. I did put a 60k mile 17-050 back in( left it on the engine), but got a new TO bearing... :)

Douglas
 

saCusa

Active member
Joined
May 20, 2020
Location
USA
TDI
mk.IV Golf BEW M5
My clutch pedal does something similar. I hear a whirring noise in neutral with the clutch pedal released, and the clutch pedal vibrates in tune with the engine in any position except fully depressed. The noise and the vibration in the pedal go away completely at that point. Not sure what it is, but it hasn't got any worse since I bought the car two years ago so I'm just living with it and it doesn't bother me any more.
 

Bhavick

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Jun 25, 2018
Location
United Kingdom
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1.9TDI
Found this from our local parts store here in the UK i just hope it's the right one?

 

Tdijarhead

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Nov 10, 2013
Location
Lawrenceville PA
TDI
2003 TDI Jetta Daughters Car, 2001 TDI Beetle, Daughters car, 2005 Golf TDI Mine, all 5 spds
So you're about to remove the transmission to replace the throw out bearing only? If the throw out bearing is going bad it's likely the clutch is nearing end of life also, unless it was replaced previously and the throw out bearing was not. If I went to the trouble of pulling the transmission I would most certainly replace the entire clutch to include the pivot pin and clip and the clutch arm. A new LUK Repset not only includes the entire clutch and flywheel but also a new throw out bearing.
 

KrashDH

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Dec 22, 2013
Location
Washington
TDI
2002 Golf
Take the advice from everyone here and replace the clutch while you're in there. Those of us that have done this, you only want to be in and out of that job once if possible. It's not fun fishing that transmission in and out of your car, on your back, in a driveway or garage. So replace everything you can while it's out. Seals, clutch, fork, bearing, spring, ie everything you can get at. If you don't, well you're just a glutton for punishment I suppose
 

Vince Waldon

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Apr 25, 2009
Location
Edmonton AB Canada
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2001 ALH Jetta, 2003 ALH Wagon, 2005 BEW Wagon
... which is why it generally makes sense not to over-think "why is my clutch noisy"? for too long...best practice is to replace everything that could be making noise anyways, while you've spend all the $$$$ on labour to get access. :)
 

KrashDH

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Location
Washington
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2002 Golf
... which is why it generally makes sense not to over-think "why is my clutch noisy"? for too long...best practice is to replace everything that could be making noise anyways, while you've spend all the $$$$ on labour to get access. :)
Exactly. When I did mine, I heard the noise on the way home from the gym. It was a new noise and I knew something wasn't right and that it was clutch related. I went home and parked it until I could start tearing into it. Overly paranoid? Yeah I probably was. But last thing I want was something catastrophic to fail and leave me stranded
 

C.Powell

Active member
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Oct 10, 2017
Location
Alberta
TDI
MkIV Jetta Station Wagon
Just had a noisy clutch changed at 364000km. Clattering in neutral went away when pedal depressed and shifting quality had diminished. Can't seem to get the pic of the missing piece of pressure plate diaphragm spring to attach tho..
 

Vince Waldon

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Apr 25, 2009
Location
Edmonton AB Canada
TDI
2001 ALH Jetta, 2003 ALH Wagon, 2005 BEW Wagon
One word of caution, for balance reasons lots of clutch assemblies appear to have one missing spring but they are like that from the factory on purpose.

Not saying this is the case for you, but others have been fooled in the past. Probably some threads here with some "is this normal?!" pictures.

Of course if there's a jagged edge where a chunk of spring used to be, all bets are off. :)
 

C.Powell

Active member
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Oct 10, 2017
Location
Alberta
TDI
MkIV Jetta Station Wagon
One word of caution, for balance reasons lots of clutch assemblies appear to have one missing spring but they are like that from the factory on purpose.

:)
I wondered about that but the Bentley manual shows a continuous diaphragm spring. Is there a particular style for a make?. Any ideas on the socket to get the p/plate-flywheel bolts out? Some wavy thing.


But for the original poster T.O. bearing or something pressure plate related.
Once you are in that far do all the just in case stuff that you can access.
 

Vince Waldon

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Location
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2001 ALH Jetta, 2003 ALH Wagon, 2005 BEW Wagon
Sockets are standard 12 pt (as opposed to the *more* standard 6 pt). :)

Can't comment on which manufacturers do or don't skip a spring finger... have seen both over the years.

As an example, post #8 in this thread: https://forums.tdiclub.com/index.ph...ing-clutch-trans-problem.482887/#post-5346325

shows a new Sachs clutch sans one finger. The text talks about the finger being missing to allow bolt access... which is probably a better reason than my guess about balance.
 
Last edited:

C.Powell

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Oct 10, 2017
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Alberta
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MkIV Jetta Station Wagon
Thanks. I shall stop looking for the (not) missing finger and investigate further. A generic pic used in the Bentley maybe.
 

P2B

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Joined
Jan 11, 2006
Location
Toronto & Muskoka, Canada
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2002 Jetta, 2003 Jetta, 2003 Jetta Wagon
OK I've tried taking a video to see if i can capture the sound not sure if you can hear it or not in the video below?


The noise definitely happens when you are pressing the clutch down once it's reaches the bottom of it's travel then it disappears. I've been doing a bit of reading and some people say it could be the throw out bearing?
Yep, sounds like throwout bearing to me, but the last one I heard like that lasted another 3 years and 50k kms before it failed completely - and even then the car was still drivable.

It ain't broke yet so doesn't need fixed ;)
 

Bhavick

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Jun 25, 2018
Location
United Kingdom
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1.9TDI
Yep, sounds like throwout bearing to me, but the last one I heard like that lasted another 3 years and 50k kms before it failed completely - and even then the car was still drivable.

It ain't broke yet so doesn't need fixed ;)
Thanks for the kind words. To be honest after having the turbo recently changed and now this come up is a bit of a PITA not to mention the labour costs for actually removing the transmission etc etc. To be honest the bearing I've found on eurocarparts is only £15 which is nothing really but it's labour cost that's gonna get me.
 

PakProtector

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Jan 5, 2014
Location
AnnArbor, MI
TDI
Mk.4 and the Cummins-es
and that is why I would love a $50 throw out bearing...assuming proportionally longer life vs the OE ones for the extra $$.
cheers,
Douglas
 

snakeye

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Dec 13, 2009
Location
Montreal, Canada
TDI
2003 Jetta and Wagon, GLS 5sp
The LUK 17 050 is pretty cheap, more durable than stock, and comes fully assembled, and the throwout bearing is included. Why change the bearing only when it could actually be your DMF that's making noise?
 

Bhavick

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Location
United Kingdom
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1.9TDI
The LUK 17 050 is pretty cheap, more durable than stock, and comes fully assembled, and the throwout bearing is included. Why change the bearing only when it could actually be your DMF that's making noise?
yeah this is the one i found for my car https://www.eurocarparts.com/p/luk-clutch-release-bearing-644440050

yeah that's true it could be the DMF that's making the noise but i guess your not gonna know until it's been opened up and checked. I can understand now why people recommend replacing the whole clutch while the gearbox is out at least your safe in the knowledge that it's been done and will hopefully last a long time considering the mileage of these cars now i forget sometimes mines a 2002 and done almost 170000. Last thing you would wanna do is just replace the bearing only and then something else messes up a couple of months later. It's a tough one because it's one of those things that until you actually remove the gearbox you won't know for sure what's wrong or the overall condition of the clutch. I wonder if the throw out bearing going is an indicator that the clutch will soon need doing too.
 

Vince Waldon

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Joined
Apr 25, 2009
Location
Edmonton AB Canada
TDI
2001 ALH Jetta, 2003 ALH Wagon, 2005 BEW Wagon
Once you pull the transmission you'll be able to disassemble and thoroughly inspect everything.

You'll be able to spin the throw-out bearing, see if it makes noise. Measure the clutch plate thickness. Check the DMF system for signs of wear. Examine the flywheel for glazing.

Right now, unless you're Superman with x-ray vision, all you can do is guess where the problem is. :)
 
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